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Officials Attempt to Stymie Scammers With Unified Demolition Plan

State and local officials want a single contract to demolish all the properties destroyed in the fires. They hope this will protect homeowners from scammers, and make sure hazardous debris is properly

State and local officials want a single contract to demolish all the properties destroyed in the fires. They hope this will protect homeowners from scammers, and make sure hazardous debris is properly disposed of. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

The first step in recovery is to clear out the debris of the 2,000 burned out structures. Both the city and the county of San Diego plan to offer homeowners a demolition service certified to deal with the hazardous materials lurking in the ashes.

County Supervisor Bill Horn says this'll save homeowners from having to hunt down reliable demolition contractors.

Horn : Just don't go out and sign some contract, we have a lot of shysters coming in here and offering services. Don't pay them any money whatsoever. If you're going to get paid for clean up, it'll be paid for by your insurance company and if you weren't insured we will deal with FEMA, so don't rush into anything.

State emergency funds may front the money for a coordinated clean up -- which would then be reimbursed by individuals' insurance policies. However the contract might take well over a month to complete.

Alison St John, KPBS News.

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